Teen Celebrates Birthday, Tragically Drowns in Las Vegas Floodwaters


Tragic news emerged from Las Vegas as a 13-year-old boy, who had just celebrated his birthday days earlier, drowned while trying to enjoy an afternoon of inner-tubing on floodwaters with his friends.

Ryan Taylor was found injured, submerged near the Boulder Highway, having been trapped under an SUV. A group of good Samaritans managed to hoist this vehicle, enabling the boy’s unfortunate retrieval. These brave individuals included Ryan’s family members, neighbors, and casual bystanders, amongst them a local resident named John Cruz.

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Following the incident, Ryan was rushed to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center for emergency aid. However, despite the best efforts of medical professionals, he succumbed to his injuries in the early hours of Sunday. The cause of his death was confirmed as accidental drowning by the Clark County Coroner’s office.

Jennifer Webb, an eyewitness to the horrifying event, recounted Ryan and his friends frolicking in the floodwaters, seemingly ignorant of the impending danger. Webb, appearing on Las Vegas’ KSNV TV station, explained how Ryan appeared to be enjoying himself until the sudden current swept him away.

John Cruz, recounting his terrifying experience, couldn’t contain his confusion and terror as he battled the harsh currents to help extricate Ryan from beneath the submerged vehicle.

Ryan’s father, Mathew Taylor, in a heartfelt statement over the Labor Day weekend, noted the swift turn of events from pleasure to tragedy, stating the perils of treating floodwaters lightly. He also took the time to express his gratitude to the brave individuals who risked their lives in the rescue operation.

Adding to the gloom, Irene Reynaga, Ryan’s mother, recollected the harrowing moment when paramedics confirmed her son lacked a heartbeat upon arrival. Despite repeated attempts at the hospital, he passed away at 2:30 a.m. on Sunday. The couple spoke openly of the heartache experienced from the loss of a child, especially their eldest son, a beloved figure amongst friends and his siblings.

In response to the flood of condolences and outpouring of support, the family established a GoFundMe page to help with the sudden expenses incurred. As of Tuesday, they have surpassed their initial goal of $5,000, with contributions reaching up to $7,205. The page is filled with tributes to Ryan as an extraordinary kid, fondly remembered for his compassion towards his siblings.

Elsewhere in Las Vegas that weekend, a second drowning occurred near Rainbow Boulevard as the city’s fire and rescue teams discovered a lifeless body. The unnamed individual is believed to have drowned amidst a storm, with strong currents carrying the body among debris. Despite numerous rescues carried out by firefighters during the storm, 30 to 35 vehicles were reported stranded in the turbulent waterways.